writers The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today  

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List Rules Authors and writers who are still alive. Vote up the best, most talented, living writers.

If you consider yourself a bibliophile, this list of the absolute best living authors should be of great interest to you. It features writers who have forever shaped the literary world, producing many books that will go down in history as classics. The art form of literature and writing usually attempts to depict the changing world around us in one aspect or another. It's important to understand the times in which we live and forever record that for the next generation to read. Who are the best living writers attempting this feat?

The novelists on this list are some of the most famous writers in history, not just in modern times. Many of the books these authors have written have been made into blockbuster films, while others are simply modern day literary classics, that need to be read to be truly appreciated. These writers, and their works, will be remembered for generations to come.

This list features the best living writers who are producing some of the world’s best written work including, Philip Roth, J.K. Rowling, Suzanne Collins, Stephen King, James Patterson, Nicholas Sparks, and Tom Wolfe. Vote up the best living authors below and see how the writers you think are the best rank!

1
+ - 522 316
Cormac McCarthy is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Cormac McCarthy All the Pretty Horses, Child of God, No Country for Old Men

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2
+ - 730 506
J. K. Rowling is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
J. K. Rowling Harry Potter series, The Casual Vacancy

3
+ - 607 412
Stephen King is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Stephen King The Shining, The Stand, Carrie

4
+ - 342 249
Thomas Pynchon is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Thomas Pynchon V., The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity's Rainbow

5
+ - 376 277
Haruki Murakami is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Haruki Murakami A Wild Sheep Chase, Norwegian Wood, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

6
+ - 285 201
Toni Morrison is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Toni Morrison Jazz, The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon

7
+ - 268 182
Margaret Atwood is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Margaret Atwood The Handmaid's Tale, Cat's Eye, Alias Grace

8
+ - 271 192
Philip Roth is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Philip Roth American Pastoral, The Human Strain

9
+ - 241 174
Salman Rushdie is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Salman Rushdie Midnight's Children, Shame, Fury

10
+ - 209 147
Don DeLillo is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Don DeLillo White Noise, Libra, Mao II

11
+ - 199 137
Milan Kundera is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Milan Kundera The Unbearable Lightness of Being, The Joke

12
+ - 175 117
J. M. Coetzee is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
J. M. Coetzee Life & Times of Michael K, Foe, Age of Iron

13
+ - 172 119
Alice Munro is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Alice Munro Friend of My Youth, Open Secrets, The Love of a Good Woman

14
+ - 236 180
Neil Gaiman is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Neil Gaiman Stardust, The Graveyard Book, American Gods

15
+ - 148 101
John Irving is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Irving The Cider House Rules, A Son of the Circus, A Prayer for Owen Meany

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16
+ - 146 100
George R. R. Martin is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
George R. R. Martin A Game of Thrones, A Feast for Crows, A Dance with Dragons

17
+ - 163 124
Ian McEwan is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Ian McEwan Saturday, The Innocent, Atonement

18
+ - 160 117
Kazuo Ishiguro is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Kazuo Ishiguro The Saddest Music in the World, The White Countess, The Unconsoled

19
+ - 87 51
Ursula K. Le Guin is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Ursula K. Le Guin The Left Hand of Darkness, The Dispossessed, A Wizard of Earthsea

20
+ - 128 94
Michael Chabon is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Michael Chabon Wonder Boys, Summerland, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

21
+ - 139 108
Tom Wolfe is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Tom Wolfe The Last American Hero, Bonfire of the Vanities, The Right Stuff

22
+ - 123 99
Michel Houellebecq is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Michel Houellebecq Platform, Whatever, H. P. Lovecraft: Against the World

23
+ - 101 70
John le Carré is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John le Carré The Tailor of Panama, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

24
+ - 87 51
Khaled Hosseini is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Khaled Hosseini The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, Cometas En El Cielo / The Kite Runner

25
+ - 84 61
Rick Riordan is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Rick Riordan The Lightning Thief, The Sea of Monsters, The Red Pyramid

26
+ - 95 78
Donna Tartt is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Donna Tartt The Secret History, The Little Friend, The Goldfinch

27
+ - 73 53
Mario Vargas Llosa is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Mario Vargas Llosa The Feast of the Goat, The Way to Paradise, The Cubs and Other Stories

28
+ - 110 93
Joan Didion is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Joan Didion Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Play It As It Lays, The Year of Magical Thinking

29
+ - 111 91
Junot Díaz is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Junot Díaz The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, This is How You Lose Her

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30
+ - 96 86
Jeffrey Eugenides is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Jeffrey Eugenides The Virgin Suicides, The Marriage Plot, Middlesex

31
+ - 69 61
V.S. Naipaul is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
V.S. Naipaul A Bend in the River, A House for Mr Biswas, In a Free State

32
+ - 130 116
Chuck Palahniuk is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Chuck Palahniuk Fight Club, Choke, Rant

33
+ - 100 95
Joyce Carol Oates is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Joyce Carol Oates Snowfall, Love and Its Derangements and Other Poems, The Journals of Joyce Carol Oates

34
+ - 84 81
Barbara Kingsolver is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Barbara Kingsolver The Poisonwood Bible, Animal Vegetable Miracle, The Bean Trees

35
+ - 43 36
Bill Bryson is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Bill Bryson A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail, A Short History of Nearly Everything, The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid: A Memoir

36
+ - 128 124
Jonathan Franzen is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Jonathan Franzen The Twenty-Seventh City, How to Be Alone, Freedom

37
+ - 105 113
Zadie Smith is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Zadie Smith Piece of Flesh, White Teeth, On Beauty

38
+ - 83 78
Marilynne Robinson is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Marilynne Robinson Housekeeping, Gilead, Home

39
+ - 42 39
John Banville is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Banville Albert Nobbs, The Book of Evidence, The Sea

40
+ - 43 44
Julian Barnes is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Julian Barnes Flaubert's Parrot, The Porcupine, The Lemon Table

41
+ - 40 37
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Purple Hibiscus, Half of a Yellow Sun, La Flor Purpura

42
+ - 75 72
John Green is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Green The Fault in Our Stars, Looking for Alaska, An Abundance of Katherines

43
+ - 41 44
Sherman Alexie is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Sherman Alexie Smoke Signals, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Reservation Blues

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44
+ - 74 73
Martin Amis is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Martin Amis Money, London Fields

45
+ - 49 51
Tobias Wolff is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Tobias Wolff This Boy's Life: A Memoir, Old School, The Barracks Thief

46
+ - 23 19
Diana Gabaldon is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Diana Gabaldon Outlander, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, Voyager

47
+ - 47 50
Gene Wolfe is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Gene Wolfe An Evil Guest, Return to the Whorl, On Blue's Waters

48
+ - 62 61
Denis Johnson is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Denis Johnson Angels, Jesus' Son, Train

49
+ - 100 106
John Grisham is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Grisham The Firm, The Chamber, Mickey

50
+ - 40 42
Christian Kracht is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Christian Kracht Ich werde hier sein im Sonnenschein und im Schatten, Finsterworld, Faserland